Pneumatic systems can incorporate a variety of different sensors, including flow sensors, position and proximity sensors, vacuum and force sensors and combinations of the above, all of which require accessories to connect them to the control system and transmit gathered information. They can be used to measure infinitesimal changes in compressed air, inert and non-flammable gases, water and electromagnetic responses, and may also take the form of solenoid valves.
Connector assemblies are used to plug in pneumatic sensory equipment to a control panel or DIN rail mounting. Most cable connectors are available in male or female options, with straight or angled plugs containing 3 or 4 pin connections and some choices of single or double-ended cable. Cabling of up to three metres typically has a protective outside cover, available in distinctive colours for identification. Coverings are generally made from vinyl, polymers or chloroprene rubber, with a dual or triple core cable assembly terminating in a plug and port connector or reed switch. The cover affords protection from dust and foreign particulates and helps to reduce the risk of short circuit accidents, while also affording insulation and, in certain varieties, weather proofing.
Proximity and position sensors are used to determine the position of a piston inside the pneumatic cylinder or actuator, and are often supplied as reed switches utilising a magnetic sensor. They are usually available in both dual and triple wire cable options, and have either vertical entry or in-line entry configuration.